I originally wrote this for Precious Igwe of http://preshinspires.wordpress.comÂ for her “Redefining feminity” series.
It has been said that a certain feminine trait must exist in the lives of some women no matter how much they try to shake it off.
They say all women must bicker at the top of their voices regardless of wherever they are, even in public.
Pictures abound of women tearing off their hairs while engaging in combats worthy of being featured in Nollywood movies.
They say all women must hate their fellow women in their hearts.
They say all women will never give out compliments to the next woman.
Well, I’m inclined to agree with these sayings because I’ve also met my fair share of these kind of women in time past…
My roommate at a time(sad to say) had this so-called feminine trait. She is an amazing person if I may say so myself, but only to some hand picked others. I noticed a pattern of âwhy is your dress like this,or make up like thisâ with her and not one âyou look goodâ ever passed through her lips.
At first I thought she was just that way, I mean most women are like right? But then I thought it was a sad way to live, never seeing the good in others.
And before you go all self righteous on me, you could have behaved like her in some way in the past, even I must have behaved this way in the past… After all, they say all women must be like this, secretly envious of achievements in other women. But I say, who sets the tone for these negative traits in women? Why should unique creatures like us be defined by this terrible feminine trait?
Dragging the next woman down isn’t feminity. Whoever defined feminity by jealousy and an inability to appreciate our fellow females lied!
Now, no self-respecting woman fishes for positive compliments, a confident woman can look in the mirror and compliment herself but there’s something about others complimenting you for a job well done and this compliment is what most women withhold because of the green eyed demon(envy) in them.
By all means, you can withhold the compliments but then, you also shouldn’t say negative things either.
I see pictures of women online and another woman’s hateful comment underneath…
“Na body magic she use oh…”
“See as she fat, see as she thin, she nor go go do surgery suck fat from her body, see as she ugly”…
A woman gets awards and recognition for her contribution to society and the next comment we hear is “she slept with the bosses to get it, ashewo”…
Why oh why these evils?
From fellow women nonetheless?
Women who should encourage themselves, lean on each other’s shoulders, be the air beneath each others wings…
Why can’t we all love ourselves like we are meant to?
Why can’t we revel in our uniqueness and embrace each other’s quirks and talents?
Why can’t we celebrate our own?
What’s holding us back from letting the light of another woman shine without feeling the need to draw her down into the pits?
Why does this negative trait of jealousy have to permeate the women folk? It has been so ingrained into us, so much so that in my 20something years on earth, I’ve only met few women who are confident enough to let their fellow women shine.
One of these women is my best friend Mojaye Lilian. I always used to ponder on how she could be secure enough to praise(not flatter) any girl to the moon and back. She would shriek “OMG, you did a good job” without any feeling of envy in her.
I always wondered about how she did it. It takes a confident woman to do that and still feel sane.
All women should know that the seemingly joking words of “who told you you are beautiful” that we say to our fellow females are not jokes at all. They can chip at another woman’s worth and eat at her even in the dark hours of the night.
We are all beautiful. We are all wonderful creatures with our individual lights. We do not need to dim another’s light for ours to shine.
Being beautiful shouldn’t be a knowledge that dawns on us because we put another down.
Our bosses won’t promote us because we back-bite our fellow female colleague.
Your craft won’t magically improve because you spread terrible news about the next woman’s craft.
Let the scheming and haughty set of our necks while we look down at other women stop.
Let’s all be confident enough in our own skin to celebrate each other.
Let another woman’s light shine if need be, there’s a space in the sky for us all.
We need each other to survive
We need each other to glow.
When one woman shines, a billion others shine.
One woman shining is equivalent to womanhood shining as a whole.
Let this knowledge sink into us.